SHOPPERS ANGRY AS COUNCIL AXE GOES THROUGH QUEEN ST PLANTINGS
FURIOUS shoppers are shocked at the removal of trees from St Marys.
Many have slammed the move as a stark contrast to Penrith Council’s promise to cool the area.
But a council spokesman said the trees would eventually be replaced.
Those trees are the only thing that make the street appealing and they are ripping them out.
SHOPPERS and residents are furious Queen St’s leafy established trees have been cut down during the shopping area’s multi-million dollar upgrade.
Many people have taken to social media to condemn the move as contradictory to Penrith Council’s promise to cool the area with more trees with its The Cooling the City strategy.
However, a spokesman for the council said the trees, many of which were diseased, would be replaced with more suitable options as part of the $6.7 million upgrade works to the street.
The council is conducting an audit of about 7000 trees as it decides where new ones can be planted across the region.
Reader Kel Dawson said she was furious the trees had been cut down. “What the hell is going on in Queen St? Those trees are the only thing that make the street appealing and they are ripping them out”, she wrote on Facebook.
Vicki Blackwell said more trees should be planted “along Queen St, St Marys, where they just bloody chopped them all down – looks terrible now”.
In March, The Standard reported the council was looking at ways to combat urban heat after nine areas were identified as extreme-heat hot spots, including the Colyton/St Marys/Oxley Park intersection.
The council was success-
– KEL DAWSON
ful in gaining a $67,000 State Government grant to help find ways to cool the city.
The council has been promoting its recent adoption of an Urban Forest Strategy, which Mayor Karen McKeown said outlined hotspots as they explored “costeffective and simple ways to help cool the city”.
University of Technology Sydney’s Institute for Sustainable Futures research consultant Candice Delaney has been working in partnership with the council to provide research on green cover policy.
She said when it came to long-term and sustainable cooling solutions, “trees have a double cooling effect as they provide shade and release moisture through evapotranspiration”.
The council spokesman said St Marys businesses and residents living within a kilometre of Queen St were notified and consulted about the tree replacement.
“The vast majority were supportive of the upgrades and tree replacement.”
Should the trees have stayed? Facebook.com/ mtdruittstandard